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Improving surgical options

Community Hospital Anderson is the first and only hospital in Madison County to offer robotic minimally invasive surgery.

The da Vinci Surgical System provides surgeons with greater precision, control and access to hard-to-reach areas, allowing complex operations to be performed through just a few small incisions. Now, minimally invasive techniques can be used for complicated procedures that once demanded open surgery.

The system's technology takes surgery beyond the limits of human hands and can be used for many procedures, including prostatectomy, hysterectomy, myomectomy, coronary artery bypass, mitral valve repair and colorectal surgery.

Contrary to myths, a robot isn't operating alone on a patient. Using the da Vinci system, the surgeon operates from the console, viewing 3-D images of the surgical field. The surgeon's fingers grasp the master controls below the display, with hands and wrists naturally positioned relative to his or her eyes. The system seamlessly translates the surgeon's hand, wrist and finger movements into precise, real-time movements of surgical instruments inside the patient. The advanced feature set enables surgeons to perform more procedures through very small incisions.

General surgeon Ben McCurdy, M.D., is the first to use da Vinci at Community Anderson. "The da Vinci is very intuitive, with easy-to-learn controls. I'm excited about the ability to not only use this for intra abdominal, but intra thoracic procedures as well," says Dr. McCurdy. "It's fun to see computerized techniques continue to advance what we can provide surgically, and the advance in patient gains in the way of post-op recovery will be tremendous."

Consistent high-quality care

We now have the most up-to-date surgical technology at Community Anderson, but we've always had the quality patients deserve. "Patients should be aware of our low infection rates and how these rates compare to other facilities," says Lisa Thomas, R.N., B.S.N., CNOR, director of surgical services. "We have some of the lowest rates in the entire state." To cut down on post-op infection, lengthy stays, increased pain and other complications, we follow Association of Perioperative Nurses standards of practice. "Besides just having good technique, we all have a surgical conscience," says Thomas. "If you see someone break sterile technique, you say to him or her 'you're not sterile anymore.' Just a part of being in surgery is having that conscience."

Are you a candidate for da Vinci surgery?

Check all that apply:

  • I would like to avoid a large incision and scar.
  • I would like to minimize the length of time I am in the hospital.
  • I would like to minimize the blood loss and need for transfusion(s) during surgery.
  • I would like to minimize my risk of infection after surgery.
  • I would like to understand which surgical options can provide me with the best possible outcome and the fastest return to my normal activities.

While clinical studies support the effectiveness of da Vinci when used in minimally invasive surgery, individual results may vary. Surgery with the system may not be appropriate for every individual. Bring this checklist to your doctor's appointment and ask to be referred to a da Vinci-trained surgeon at Community Anderson.